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"Our alarm clock was small arms fire": Medal of Honor winner

Friday, Jun 20, 2014 - 02:31

June 20 - U.S. Marine William ''Kyle'' Carpenter awarded the Medal of Honor for gallantry recalls conditions on the ground in Afghanistan in 2010. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.

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Helmand Province was the scene of some of the toughest fighting in Afghanistan in 2010 It was a time when there were too many firefights to count says U.S. Marine, William Kyle Carpenter. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. MARINE WILLIAM KYLE CARPENTER, SAYING: "Many times our alarm clock was small arms fire." Carpenter was was awarded the Medal of Honor Thursday for covering a grenade with his body and saving a comrade's life. He doesn't remember what happened. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MARINE WILLIAM KYLE CARPENTER, SAYING: "My entire body and especially my face got hit really hard -- with say a two by four. My vision -- if you were looking at a TV with no cable, and it was just we white and black static look -- that's what my vision looked like. My eardrums -- both my eardrums were ruptured so I couldn't hear anything. The next feeling I had -- it felt like warm water was being poured all over me from the amount of blood that was coming out of my injuries. I thought of my family next, and how devastated they would be that I was killed in Afghanistan -- because even though I had just a few second from our training and what we had learned, I truly believed I was not going to wake up and I was going to die on that roof." He woke up five week later. He lost most of his jaw and an eye, his arm was fractured in more than 30 places. He underwent almost 40 surgeries and was medically retired last year. (SOUNDBITE) (English) MARINE WILLIAM KYLE CARPENTER, SAYING: "This second chance that I have been blessed with - it has really made me want to go out and tackle life head on, with full force." It was the testimony of those who Carpenter served with and saved that led to the Medal of Honor -- the highest award in the U.S. for military service.

"Our alarm clock was small arms fire": Medal of Honor winner

Friday, Jun 20, 2014 - 02:31

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